Guidelines and Protocols to know before visiting Boracay
Boracay is undoubtedly one of the best beaches in the world with its stretch of powdery white sand and clear waters; it is favored by both locals and tourists alike. Since June 1, 2020, however, access to this paradise has been limited to Western Visayas residents for health and safety precautions.
With quarantine restrictions easing up, the government recently announced that the island of Boracay will be open to tourists from all over the Philippines again, starting October 1, 2020.
But before you book that flight, there are a couple things you need to know. The Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) released some guidelines to ensure this world-class destination remains COVID-19-free:
You must be a resident of areas placed under General Community Quarantine (GCQ).
Before Department of Tourism’s announcement, only residents of Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo, and Negros Occidental were permitted to visit Boracay Island. Now, the only location-specific requirement is that your place of residence must be under GCQ (General Community Quarantine) or the more lenient MGCQ (Modified General Community Quarantine).
No age restrictions
When Boracay reopened to Western Visayas residents on June 16, the Department of Tourism (DOT) did not permit individuals below the age of 21 or those older than 60 to travel to Boracay. After a month, however, it soon lifted this age restriction. The DOT Secretary requested the IATF to remove age restrictions as Filipinos usually travel with the entire family—kids and grandparents included.
All planes land at Godofredo Ramos Airport in Caticlan
Airlines are advised to land at the Godofredo Ramos Airport as this is the only port of entry for tourists traveling by air. The airport was designated as the central point of access to screen tourists traveling by land, air, or sea.
Book your Airport Transfers before you go:
It is very important that travelers secure a negative Reverse Transcription-Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) test result. Everyone traveling to Boracay must have been tested no earlier than 48 hours before their travel date. After the test, travelers are strongly advised to observe strict quarantine precautions until their intended date of travel.
Health Declaration Card
To monitor tourists entering the province of Aklan, the province released an online health declaration card that tourists are required to fill out, submit, and download. The QR code obtained from this health declaration form shall be presented upon arrival at the Godofredo Ramos Airport in Caticlan.
You can access Aklan’s online health declaration here.
Prior bookings are required
Mayor Bautista of Malay, Aklan informed visitors that they should have hotel or accommodation bookings prior to their arrival. After booking, they need to register through the mobile app of the province of Aklan. Currently, DOT has issued Certificates of Authority to Operate (CAO) to about 400 establishments, which are a compilation of hotels, resorts, and Mabuhay accommodations or the accommodation for the low-end sector.
There are more than 4,000 rooms ready to accommodate tourists in Boracay. Considering the additional spend for the PCR tests, hotel owners have agreed to lower their room rates. Rooms that previously cost around 8,000 to 10,000 PHP are now available to as low as 2,500 PHP.
You can access the full list of accredited accommodations and hotels here.
Needless to say, tourists will still need to wear face masks and observe social distancing at all times. Keep in mind that it will be easier for all of us to reach more of our favorite vacation spots if we become responsible travelers that prioritize the health and safety of everyone.
This article will be updated regularly.